Message from the Pastor
***New Update as of 5/27/2020***
New Market Baptist Church's Responsible
(Recommended by Pastor, Deacons, and Trustees)
Please see the following message from Pastor Taylor:
Dear New Market Baptist Church,
Beginning May 31, 2020 and lasting until July 26, 2020, New Market Baptist Church will gather on Sundays for one weekly worship service at 10:15 am. There will be social distancing protocols in place that will enhance the safety of those attending. For example, pews will be marked off to allow for social distancing; no offering plates will be passed; offerings will be collected in designated areas as people exit. There will not be a greeting time with handshaking. An overflow viewing area in the Fellowship Hall will be available for parents with small children who may be unable to sit through the service. Masks are recommended as people enter and exit but are not required. Please refrain from attending if you have a fever or show any potential Covid-19 symptoms.
During this time period (May 31-July 26), there will be no Sunday School, Nursery,
Children's Church, Choir, or Mid-Week Services. We will not have Vacation Bible School,
G. A. Camp, Youth Camp, or Appalachian Outreach Week this year. The church will gather for its monthly Business Meetings on June 7 and July 26, immediately following the morning service.
As the Pastor, Deacons, and Trustees considered when to re-assemble, our aim was to be guided by God's wisdom, not human preference, popularity, or politics
(Proverbs 2:6, 1:7 James 1:5). In setting these dates and recommending these guidelines, we considered the data available from the CDC, Local Government, and the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board. We also wanted to follow two guiding principles from Scripture.
First, we wanted to obey our governing authorities, "Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities" (Romans 13:1). God through Peter commands believers to,
"Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake whether to the king as supreme, 14 or to governors,...15 For this is the will of God,..." (1 Peter 2: 13-15).
Second, we wanted to be considerate of others, especially our elderly and most vulnerable, "Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others" (Philippians 2:4). Paul wrote, "All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify. Let no one seek his own, but each one the other's well-being" (1 Corinthians 10: 23-24). We realize some people are wired by the Lord to be more cautious while others more adventurous; these personality traits influence individual opinions about the church re-gathering.
As we begin to responsibly re-gather, we must understand that some ministries will be temporarily put on hold, some cancelled, and some postponed. Consequently, new protocols will be in place to ensure the safety of all of our members especially the most vulnerable among us, "We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbor for his good to edification" (Romans 15: 1-2 KJV). These changes are temporary and will only last until the end of July, unless the Covid -19 virus warrants another cancellation of gatherings.
Not every person who is a part of our church family or local community will feel safe assembling. As we begin, the crowds could be smaller. We expect and accept this. What is vital in these days is that we do not judge one another's faith or character based upon their in-person attendance or opinion regarding the pandemic. We must give each person the freedom and grace to make their own personal decision about when it is right for them to return to the fellowship.
True Christ-followers should not laugh at ("coarse jesting" Ephesians 5:4) or speak ill of those who do not attend in person, or choose to wear a mask or avoid physical interaction while attending. God through Paul admonishes us to "let your conversation always be full of grace" (Colossians 4:6). Paul also warned the church not to be judgmental over"disputable matters" in Romans 14. Such actions or attitudes will be used by Satan to undermine the unity of our church and keep people from ever returning to NMBC. The maturity of our walk with Christ will be tested in this time, "Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another"
Even as we re-assemble, in whatever number, we cannot guarantee anyone who attends certain protection from the coronavirus. Thus, those who attend do so at their own risk. We ask all of you to join us in praying for this responsible re-gathering to resume safely and undiminished. It will be incredibly joyous to be together in the Lord's house once again as we worship Jesus & hear from God's Holy Word. I pray we can say, " I was glad when they said unto me, "Let us go into the house of the Lord." Psalm 122:1.
Pastor J. W.
Below are links for printable forms. These forms can either be mailed back to the church at P. O. Box 129 New Market, TN 37820, or emailed to email@example.com.